Discussions that mention valium

Back Problems board

I had a TLIF @ L4/5 w/screws, rods etc. done Sept. 25, 2007. The fusion appears to have failed. Doc has no explanation as to why it may have failed but did have a fancy name for it: "Pseudarthrosis".

I do have to mention though that immediately after the surgery the back, leg, hip pain that I was experiencing was totally 100% GONE! Now, there is significant sharp pain when I do any type of bending, twisting, extended walking, extended sitting, getting up from a chair (especially my favorite adirondack chair) or the couch etc. If I mow our 3/4 acre on the riding mower I can barely walk the next day. The past couple of weeks I have actually lost my balance and fell twice.

At 10 months out I went to my Ortho Surgeon for a follow up. Doc took x-rays and declared the fusion was finally starting to show signs of some positive progress. According to him the experience he's had in his practice is that at 10 months, the fusion is supposed to be nearly complete, we shake hands, no more follow ups with him should be required and we both live happily ever after. But, this is not to be in my case. To verify his observations w/x-rays, he sent me for a CT scan and MRI (I didn't realize how claustrophobic I was until I went for my 1st MRI. Valium is a wonderful thing.) I went in earlier this week for his interpretation of the scans. He told me that while the x-rays appeared to show something was finally happening, the CT and MRI clearly showed very little if any progress had taken place.

From here he said I had a couple of options.
First - I could wait... see what happens... and hope for the best. He said at the rate of things so far that it could very well be years before the fusion was complete if at all. (not my favorite)
Second - I should seriously consider a "360-degree", "Global" or "Circumferential Fusion" (all 3 terms meaning the same). He favors the 360 as the best option as in his opinion it has proven to have a better success rate than a TLIF alone. I assume this is because the problem is approached both anterior and posterior. (the extent of my knowledge of the 360 fusion procedure.)

If possible, I would like to hear from others that have had the 360-degree fusion surgery. Including post op level of pain, recovery time, overall success etc. as well as pointing me to other sources of on-line information on this procedure. I'm hungry for information, not looking forward to another surgery but do want to get back to a somewhat normal life with minimal pain.


Kevin in Houston :wave: